Anecdotes: Writers & Poets

Interesting, amusing, or biographical incidents about writers, novelists, playwrights, and poets.
Louisa May Alcott

When Miss Alcott became a celebrity, she often...

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Isaac Asimov

Once Horace Gold [editor] went too far. He...

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Hilaire Belloc portrait by Emil Otto Hoppé

During the 1930s in a railway carriage Belloc...

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Young Robert Browning

Browning’s Sordello was published in...

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William F. Buckley

In 1965, Buckley ran as Conservative candidate...

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Samuel Butler

“Promise me solemnly,” I said to her as she...

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Agatha Christie

Agatha Christie’s second husband, Max Mallowan...

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Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Coleridge was once involved in discussion with...

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Noël Coward

Coward was strolling around an art exhibition...

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Charles Dickens

When Charles Dickens moved into Tavistock...

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John Donne

Donne secured the post of secretary to Sir...

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Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Joking with Doyle during a rehearsal for one...

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Alexandre Dumas

Dumas’s quarrel with a rising young politician...

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T. S. Eliot

Publisher Robert Giroux once asked Eliot...

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William Faulkner

Faulkner was on a shooting expedition with...

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Robert Frost

After a dinner party Robert Frost and the...

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Erle Stanley Gardner

In the early days of his career, Gardner...

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Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

In 1830, Goethe’s dissipated son August, who...

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Dashiell Hammett

During the eight years that Hammett worked as...

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Nathaniel Hawthorne

Hawthorne’s son, Julian, was also a writer and...

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Ernest Hemingway

Hemingway’s son Patrick asked his father to...

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Rudyard Kipling

A newspaper to which Kipling subscribed...

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Charles Lamb

“Don’t introduce me to him,” said Lamb...

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Thomas Mann

Mann was introduced to an American writer of...

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W. Somerset Maugham

Unable to take his Spanish royalties out of...

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Carson McCullers

Carson McCuller’s mother was on a bus en route...

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Richard Monckton Milnes

As he lay on his deathbed the bon vivant...

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Charles Edward Montague

At the outbreak of World War I, Montague dyed...

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Eugene O’Neill

O’Neill always strongly objected to cutting...

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Dorothy Parker

In the hospital Dorothy Parker was visited by...

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Alexander Pope

When Pope was on his deathbed, the doctor...

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François Rabelais

It is said that Rabelais made the following...

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Catharine Maria Sedgwick

Like most Sedgwicks, Catharine was very fond...

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George Bernard Shaw

At a performance given by an Italian string...

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John Steinbeck

During his later years, when he was famous,...

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Rex Stout

An old midwestern farmer once ponderously...

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Dylan Thomas

On one occasion when Dylan Thomas had been...

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Louis Untermeyer

Untermeyer once returned his speaker’s fee to...

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Evelyn Waugh

Once, when he had behaved with particular...

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H.G. Wells

On leaving a Cambridge party, Wells...

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Oscar Wilde

Wilde died of cerebral meningitis in a hotel...

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Tennessee Williams

Newspaper reports in 1961 announced that...

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Alexander Woollcott

Childless himself, the redoubtable Alexander...

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William Wordsworth

Wordsworth boasted in...

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Israel Zangwill

Andrew Lang wrote to inquire of his friend...

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